Brazil Braces for 'White-Knuckle Race' Between Bolsonaro and Lula

By Jack Nicas, Flávia Milhorance, and André Spigariol

"I've sworn off polls for the next four weeks. Their methodology is broken," said AS/COA's Brian Winter to The New York Times.

In the early morning hours on Monday, President Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil went to bed vindicated. The night’s election results had shown, just as he had claimed, that the polls had severely underestimated the strength of his right-wing movement.

Hours later, he awoke to a new challenge: How to obtain millions more votes in just four weeks?

On Oct. 30, Mr. Bolsonaro will face a leftist challenger, the former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, in a runoff election to lead Latin America’s largest nation. […]

“I’ve sworn off polls for the next four weeks,” said Brian Winter, a Latin America analyst with Americas Society/Council of the Americas, a group that pushes free trade in the Americas. “Their methodology is broken.”…

In the eight previous presidential elections in Brazil’s modern democracy, the candidate that has led in the first round has never lost in the second. But the 5 percentage points separating Mr. Bolsonaro and Mr. da Silva are also the slimmest margin between two candidates in a runoff.

As a result, Mr. Winter said, “this is going to be a white-knuckle race.”

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